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ABSTRACT The stomatopods or mantis shrimps are malacostracan crustaceans of the subclass Hoplocarida. All extant hoplocarids belong to the order Stomatopoda and suborder Unipeltata. The Unipeltata comprises the extinct, stem-lineage sculdids, and the crown-group which includes the 19 extant families with more than 400 species. A cladistic analysis of all 20 families of the Unipeltata, rooted with four fossil outgroups, resulted in a single, fully resolved topology. The results largely support the existing five-superfamily classification. The Squilloidea, not the Bathysquilloidea, were the earliest derived crown-group superfamily. The Lysiosquilloidea and Erythrosquilloidea are derived as sister groups, which together are sister to the gonodactyloids. The Bathysquilloidea and Gonodactyloidea, however, were not monophyletic, supporting the erection of new superfamilies for the extinct Sculdidae and the extant Parasquillidae. The Bathysquilloidea is restricted to the Bathysquillidae and Indosquillidae, but, owing to incomplete fossil data, a new taxon is not erected for the sculdids. Instead, the Sculdidae is considered incertae sedis until more fossil data become available. The superfamilial affiliation of the Parasquillidae is also considered uncertain pending further research. Monophyly of the Heterosquillidae sensu Manning (1995) was unsupported. Paracoridon, presently a heterosquillid, is transferred to the Coronididae. Further study of coronidid relationships is necessary and may support the removal of both Acoridon and Paracoridon. The Tetrasquillidae and Heterosquillidae, as restricted here, are recognized as sister taxa, but further study may require their synonymy. Characters based on the modified male first pleopod are informative at superfamily level and further study may reveal characters useful down to the specific level.


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